As you go through my previuos posts, you can notice that in some of them I have already mentioned merits and drawbacks of working remotely. Those of you who are familiar with this type of job know how challenging it is to achieve work-life balance.That’s why it’s crucial for remote employees to set some boundaries at work.
Except for being very skillful in the area of e.g. graphics or copywriting, every remote workers needs to have one other critical ability. That ability is to know when and where to draw the hard line. Let’s discuss some boundaries at work that are the most important to set, and how to proactively communicate about them with colleagues, clients, and your family.
Set Office Hours
Although flexibility is the key benefit of working from home, nobody would tell you you can’t work traditional working hours 9-5. But if you’d like to work another hours, e.g. 10-6 p.m. or similar, put that to your calendar and stick to it. Otherwise it would be just too seasy for your work life to get inside your private life. Don’t let yourself go off on impulsive distractions—social media, TV, etc.—that destroy focus and make you fall behind.
Take Your Days Off Seriously
When your home is your office, it’s easy to sit down during the weekend to “just do one quick thing” and suddenly you are lost in your job duties and your day off disappears. Of course working on the weekends is sometimes required. Still, if you don’t have to do it – don’t do it. Take time off to recharge —that will be vital for your energy level and productivity. I would strongly encourage you to find at least one day a week to ”log out” completely and take care of your private life.
Take An Actual Lunch Break
Another good advice would be to step away from your computer and go to another room for a lunch. As mentioned already in the previous texts, healthy work-life balance is essential when you’re a remote worker. Thus, keeping the clear boundaries is crucial to maintain a work-life balance. Remember, that your working area is dedicated to work. Nothing than work should take place there. The aim of lunch, except for the most obvious aspect of hunger, is to give you 15-20 min of good relax. You won’t relax a bit in the working area.
Fake a Commute
Someone would ask ”what for?”. You are home so why bother taking your time for commuting? Makes no sense!
Really? Imagine you wake up, go to the kitchen e.g. to drink coffee, then you go to your working space. You are leaving it from time to time to cook dinner in the kitchen, hang laundry in another room. Then you are going back to work. After work you go sit on the couch to watch a movie and then go to sleep. Youy repeat this ritual every day from monday to friday, for example. Look ok to you? And what about going out somewhere? That’s the main point of this advice. Faking a commute in the morning may give you a time for yourself. Not mentioning the aspect of gaining energy before work. So you can take a 15min walk, listen to the podcast or audiobook, or simply in the silence preparing your brain to work. Do the same after your workday. It may serve as a transition from home to work. And will help you switch off.
Remeber that nothing will facilitate your job, as well as maintaining the work-life balance, as setting clear boundaries between your work life and private life. Should you have any other suggestions as to how to draw the line in that area, feel free to share them with us!